Pakistan’s gold medal-winning javelin thrower Arshad Nadeem believes that athletics ground and the best facilities are essential to win gold medal in Olympics.
Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday, Arshad urged the government to provide a fully-equipped and international-standard athletics ground for the local players and expressed the hope that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif would take steps for the betterment of athletic sports in the country.
The ace javelin thrower thanked the Athletic Federation of Pakistan (AFP) President Maj Gen (R) Muhammad Akram Sahi, other AFP officials, his department Wapda, his coach and family and especially Nayza for all-out support that helped him excel and win gold medals in the mega events.
Arshad lauded Pakistan Wapda’s role in the promotion and development of sports in Pakistan and added: “Wapda is the biggest players’ support platform in our country. I am grateful to my department Wapda, which provides jobs to many talented and potential sportspersons of the country, who are trained well under able guidance of qualified coaches and later, they win medals for the country at national and international levels. I wish that the private sector too will continue to promote our local players and we will achieve more success in the future by working together.
“I am also thankful to Nayza and its CEO Mr. Zahid Hussain for their support and training abroad as it helped me train well according to international standard and transformed me into a champion that’s why I succeeded in creating Asian record in javelin throw. With more such support, hopefully, I will succeed in giving my best in the world event and Paris Olympics,” he asserted.
When asked about the facilities being provided to his counterpart Neeraj Chopra of India, Arshad said: “Neeraj Chopra has been enjoying the best facilities in his country and it was due to heavy investment on him that he had won gold medal in the Tokyo Olympics. After winning gold medals in the Commonwealth Games and Islamic Solidarity Games, I am now hopeful that everyone will support me too and my eyes will be on winning Paris Olympics gold,” he added.
The 25-year-old athlete said that he was currently working on his injury and would undergo vigorous training before the Paris Olympics 2024. “I will prepare well for the Paris Olympics 2024. I am working on my injury and AFP President Maj Gen (R) Akram Sahi and other officials have supported me tremendously for that. The doctors have also done a great job for my recovery.”
Commenting on his meeting with PM Shehbaz today (Thursday), Arshad hoped that the PM would take measures for the advancement of athletics in the country. “My task is to produce the best results in the mega events and thanks to Allah Almighty, I succeeded in winning gold medals in the two prestigious events. Now it is up to the government and the premier what they provide me for the preparation of upcoming Olympics. The basic thing I need is fully-equipped ground for my practice and training and I am optimistic that the premier would take an abrupt decision on it and provide us a state-of-the-art athletics ground soon.”
Speaking on the occasion, Nayza CEO Zahid Hussain said: “Our meeting with Arshad Nadeem was held through Mr. Salman Butt and then we held meeting with AFP President Maj Gen (R) Akram Sahi, who asked us to fully support Nadeem saying he has potential and he can help Pakistan win international medal. First, we sent him Mashhad, Iran for training and then South Africa, where he trained for two months and then he went to USA, where he trained well.
“I think Commonwealth Games proved a lucky place for him, where he finally won the first javelin throw gold for Pakistan. He was supported and guided well by Dr Ali Bajwa and then he managed to win another gold medal in Solidarity Games in Konya, Turkey. Arshad is now our shinning stars and we are fully supporting him and want him to win more gold medals in world and Olympic events,” he added.
It is pertinent to mention here that Arshad Nadeem created history in the Commonwealth Games 2022 for Pakistan as he clinched a gold medal in the javelin event with his record throw of 90.18 meters. He also clinched won gold medal in the Islamic Solidarity Game held in Konyo, Turkey.